Broadside On

LISTEN: Jack Coates, former loftsman, describes his experience of a launch

The launch of a ship at Grovehill was a huge community event for the town of Beverley and saw people flock in their thousands to witness the vessel slide sideways into the River Hull (known as ‘Broadside On’).  This was an unconventional launch technique for heavy shipbuilding and was due to the narrowness of the river channel.  It caused a tremendous splash when the water was displaced by the launch, and either dodging the wave or getting wet from it was a great source of fun for the spectators.  This particular archive image shows the launch of the ‘Vera’ in 1907.

Cook, Welton and Gemmell itself was liquidated in 1963.

That’s the end of the trail!  Visit for more information about the ‘Trawling Through Time’ project and Cook, Welton and Gemmell Shipbuilders.